Encouraging employees to offer suggestions openly creates a culture of innovation.
The cumulative effect of many small innovations in processes and services can be more powerful than a big breakthrough. In their book Innovative Lean, Andy Brophy and John Bicheno pinpoint these five keys that make an idea management system work, keeping these innovations at the heart of operations.
Allan Kempert, continuous improvement coordinator at an 87-employee metal fabricator, told Brophy and Bicheno that asking how to make employees' jobs easier helped them feel more empowered, listened to, and happy about coming to work. At last count, his company was implementing a thousand small ideas a year, saving many thousands of dollars in labor and other costs.
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